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October 12th, 2013, 14:37
Problem is, that dogs - and any other animal, that is - cannot be categorized into "human categories" describing emotions.
Yes, even human emotions cannot be fully categorized as being the same in ALL cultures - there are more than enough cultures in which the signal, which is transporting the emotion to the "outer world" is not the same than in other cultures !

One easy example is the head movement of "yes" and of "no".
I haven't experrienced it personally yet, but I've ready that the same head movement indicating "yes" in some cultures means "no" in other cultures.

Of course "yes" and "no" are not emotions , but I've also read of a culture in which people cry tears (?) when there is something important to them, not because they are sad.
And, sadness is an emotion, isn't it ?

Which means, that the failure of the human race consists in trying to apply human categories to animals - and not trying to develop animals' own categories.

But then - how do you categotrize things if you can't be sure how they are transported to the "outside" ?

There is an rare illness which makes people's faces not able to use any muscle at all. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Facial_nerve_paralysis It means that people are unable to transport emotions to "the outer world" by using their face expressions.
Which on the other side makes them appear to be "cold" and "unemotional" - simply, because they are unable to express any emotions by using their face muscles.

I once read an article about the everyday life of such a person. It was very interesting. In it, she stated that she was working really had to get her face muscles working again, and, although an outsider couldn't see any difference, her parents ( ! ) who of course have known her for so long were able to jokingly tease her (she was quoted in that article) by "don't smile that much !"

That means, that her parents were a) able to actually *see" a difference (and that's the usual answer), or / and b) were able to sense her "smiling reaction" by some other way - which is the more esoteric answer, and the one which is usually *heavily* doubted by scientists, because it just cannot be quantified ! There simply don't exist any measuring methods to tell whether a person is actually able to "sense" somehow what kind of feelings other people live through !

Me, for example, I have the problem, that I can feel people over a distance - if they are somewhat "open" and kind of "radiate" their emotions "like a heatwave coming from an heating device). I just don't know how I do it, and I'm SURE, that any scientists would heavvily doubt that I'm able to do that, simply, because it just cannot be measured. And not properly described, too. There simply are no words existing for what I mean. And - "the things for which there are no words don't exist", that's a common mis-conception.

But - this sheds light on another problem of scientific reseach : Everything is ONLY believed nowadays, if it can be measured. If it can be quantitised (spelling ?). If it can be put down into numbers.

Which makes us - and science in general ! - depending more and more on NUMBERS, on direct evidence, than to anbything else.
How is an natural sciences scientist able to put down into numbers how scientists of the Geisteswissenschaften, the historical sciences for example - Archaeology, let's say - are interpreting an ancient text (like the Illiad, or the Oddyssey) ? Can be "interpreting a text" put down into numbers ? Can it be "baked" into an mathematical formula ?

Right now, there are still ways of thinking - and therefore sciences that rather rely on thinking rather than on pure numbers, the "Geisteswissenschaften", like the Literature sciences, or the Historical sciences , or even Philosophy, the Mother Of All Sciences - which are there.

And, this is what I fear will be the next schism in sciences : Those "driven by numbers" vs. those "driven by thinking". Those which are "driven by numbers" will be considered "more worthy" than those "driven by thinking". Current "science-lovers" aka "Sceptics" already do that. They doubt everything that's not put down into numbers. Yes, logic can be reached through pure thinking - but these "science-lovers" don't really like that. Because it doesn't involve numbers. I wouldn't be surprised if they were actually haters of LIterature sciences - simply, because these cannot be quantitized (spelling ?) and not "baked" into mathematical formulae.

We have already had such a Schism : Astronomy vs. Astrology. In ancient times, both were ONE science.
And Astrology - the Science of Interpreting some star things - got thrown out. It is not considered a "Science" anymore.

I fear that the same might or will happen with any of the so-called "Geisteswissenschaften" (according to Wikipedia, this seems to be a term unique to the German language).

Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction. (E.F.Schumacher, Economist, Source)
Last edited by Alrik Fassbauer; October 12th, 2013 at 15:03.
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